According to WordPress.com and w3techs, WordPress is powering more than 26.4% of the web. WordPress sites nearly dominate the Google searches and It is available in 162 languages. Says enough about its popularity, right? While using WordPress is relatively easy, customizing it and finding the right plugins and tools for your website can at times be painstaking, considering the large number of options available.
Based on our experience in handling WordPress,
Here are the top 20 best WordPress plugins for your website (in no particular order).
Jetpack by WordPress
Jetpack is a popular WordPress plugin that offers Custom CSS feature, for editing, modifying, and customizing. It essentially covers everything from designing, tracking, social sharing, and security.
As the name suggests, A.kis.met is a spam prevention tool that filters out hundreds of millions of spam comments from the Web each day. According to the website, “it keeps away an average of about 7.5 million spams per hour.”
Yoast SEO is amongst the best SEO plugin for WordPress websites. Right from optimizing the website, to setting a focused keyword for your blog post, analysis of content for optimization etc., Yoast SEO offers many options. It also seamlessly assists in making improvements and boasts of SEO features like XML sitemaps, breadcrumbs, robot control, automatic internal linking, and more.
WP Rocket is a great WordPress caching plugin with the only downside being that it is paid plugin. However, it brings in instant improvement in the WordPress website speed and performance. It automatically takes care of the WordPress caching settings like gzip compression, page cache, cache pre-loading provides the option to turn on features like lazy loading images, CDN support, DNS pre-fetching etc. for improving the loading time.
WP Super Cache is a free alternative with lesser features.
BackupBuddy offers WordPress websites a reliable backup strategy. Be it server crash, security issues like hacking, malware attack, or user error, deleted files or excessive bad commands, any scenario that can wipe out the content requires a backup plan which BackupBuddy provides. The only downside is that it is paid solution.
UpdraftPlus is a free (base plugin) alternative.
Formerly known as Better WP Security, iThemes Security offers over 30+ ways to secure and protect a WordPress website. iThemes Security works on various levels to protect the WordPress site by locking down WordPress, fixing common holes, stoping automated attacks and strengthening user credentials. And it offers more advanced features for experienced users.
MemberPress is an easy to use membership site software. While it allows to build a password protected community, it also allows to restrict access to pages, child pages, posts, custom post types, categories, tags and almost any other files existing in the WordPress website.
Google XML Sitemaps
Google XML Sitemaps is a WordPress plugin that assists in improving SEO by creating special XML sitemaps which allows the crawlers to easily see the complete structure of the site. This in turn improves the indexing on search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask.com etc.
It is amongst the easiest form builder available, with easy drag and drop builder. This WordPress plugin comes with pre-built templates, and provides responsive output, entry management, instant notification and easy payment integration etc. and more.
With data and analytics becoming the core of decision making, MonsterInsights comes in to properly connect the WordPress site with Google Analytics. It comes with Google Analytics Dashboard for WordPress and shows actionable analytics reports on the WordPress dashboard itself. It is simple to use and nullifies the learning curve otherwise required for working on Google analytics.
Sometimes having high quality content on the website is not enough. This is when SEMRush comes in. It assists in running a complete SEO audit, in keyword research, tracking keyword ranking, checking backlinks, and checking out competitor ranks and improving the website’s visibility. From organic research to Advertising research SEMRush handles it all.
Training is an essential aspect in the competitive market. LearnDash is a WordPress LMS that allows universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide to create (and sell) their online courses. It offers administrative capabilities along with the option to create engaging learning experiences.
Trying to customize the WordPress website without knowing anything about CSS can be tough, but not when CSS Hero comes to the rescue. CSS Hero plugin for WordPress allows to customize the website design without getting entangled in the loops of coding. Changes are saved as an additional stylesheet and hence are carried forward with updates.
Elementor Page Builder
Give page design a new lease of life with this plugin that allows live page building with no limits in design. Elementor page builder, provides an interface for editing the page and simultaneously viewing the output. It provides the feasibility for live features design and inline editing.
G Suite (Formerly Google Apps for Work)
WordPress has partnered with Google, and so integrating G Suite with the WordPress website is just a matter of few clicks. G Suite designed for workplace consist of Gmail, Hangouts, Calendar, and Google+ for communication; Drive for storage; Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, and Sites for collaboration; and an Admin panel and Vault for managing users and the services.
W3 Total Cache
W3 Total Cache is a plugin that works towards refining the SEO and user experience of the WordPress website by improving website performance, reducing loading time. It offers features like content delivery network (CDN) integration and has a web host agnostic Web Performance Optimization (WPO) framework for WordPress.
This plugin facilitates the creation of advanced forms on WordPress. With Gravity Forms, creating forms is just a process of selecting the fields, configuring the options and embedding the forms on the WordPress website. It also allows easy integrations with third party services like PayPal, MailChimp etc. through the use of optional Add-ons.
The search functionality on WordPress websites is relatively limited. SearchWP helps in overcoming this limitation and improves the search function without going into modifying the code. SearchWP offers Post meta indexing (titles, descriptions, keywords), Media file display in search results, Selective indexing etc. amongst other search features.
With customer service, live support etc. becoming essential aspects for businesses, WordPress websites too can join the trend with the help of LiveChat plugin which allows easy integration of live chat support to the website. It comes with comprehensive set of features and allows the creation personalized messages for chats too.
Slider by Soliloquy is a drag & drop slider plugin that allows to incorporate beautiful responsive image and video sliders in the WordPress site. The plugin is optimized for web and server performance.
These are just a few from the vast pool of WordPress plugins available, and the use of those are entirely website and business dependent. While most free options fulfil the basic requirements, paid plugins have more to offer in terms of advanced features and intuitive interface.
Which of these plugins have you been using? Do share your experience.
Atul is Founder & CEO at Xenia Consulting. He has over 22 years of experience in marketing, across corporates as well as SME,start-ups. Over the last 5 years, he has gained significant expertise and has helped several companies drive growth leveraging digital marketing